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Mr. Saji Thomas and Mr. Arnim Schwidrowski
Countries generally tax the forestry sector to achieve the twin objectives of revenue maximization and sustainability of logging levels. In an ideal world of perfect markets and information, auctions would be the best instrument to determine the price of extraction rights. However, a number of factors-including a lack of information on the forest resources under consideration, uncertainties as to the stability of property rights over time, and a lack of access to credit-have limited the use of auctions so far, particularly in low-income countries. To establish transparency of the forestry sector's financial flows, this paper discusses a radical simplification of Liberia's current timber tax structure, including a proposal to reduce the sector's current tax system to two instruments, an area tax and an export tax.
Mr. Arnim Schwidrowski and Mr. Saji Thomas

goals, such as avoiding a monopoly or directing licenses to local firms. However, in many countries, auctions do not work because of poor design, political preference, market failures, and the absence of natural resource property rights. In the forestry sector, the costs to potential bidders in obtaining information on the forest, the timber, the contract requirements, and the costs of fulfilling the requirements can be a significant problem in auctioning forest contracts. In the presence of imperfect credit markets, the costs, along with the risk and uncertainty of

International Monetary Fund

studies among others). Needs for improvement have been identified in the following areas: enforcement of mandatory management plans to all production forests and sensitive buffer zones, coordination between the Ministries in charge of Forests and Finance in matters pertaining to the determination, collection and transfer of forest taxes to Treasury; review and improvement of the 2003 forest taxation regime and social responsibility clauses of forest companies (cahiers de charges); enhancement of the system for awarding forest contracts with more transparency and more

International Monetary Fund
This paper on the Enhanced Initiative for Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) for the Republic of Congo explains medium-to-long-term strategy for poverty reduction. Emerging from a conflict situation, and starting from a low base, Congo has made significant progress in implementing macroeconomic, financial, and structural reforms. Debt relief under the enhanced HIPC Initiative is expected to reduce Congo’s external debt by about one-third. The authorities have emphasized that Congo’s external debt remains unsustainably high and could further delay its economic and social reform programs.
International Monetary Fund. African Dept.

,026 Production volume (cubic meters) 73,311 76,408 79,542 82,765 86,140 89,631 93,239 Notes: Baseline data from CBL. *Export and production volume projected using GDP growth prospects of key importers. Identification of export partners is done through the Trademap from the International Trade Centre ( ). In view of the foregoing, government will focus on the human and institutional capacity of the sector to enhance productivity and promote value addition in wood products. Emphasis will be placed on forest contract and

International Monetary Fund. African Dept.
The Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development 2018 to 2023 (PAPD) is the second in the series of 5-year National Development Plans (NDP) anticipated under the Liberia Vision 2030 framework. It follows the Agenda for Transformation 2012-2017 (AfT). It is informed as well by lessons learned from the implementation of the Interim Poverty Reduction Strategy 2007 (iPRS) and the Poverty Reduction Strategy (2008-2011). The fundamentals underpinning the PAPD are: i) Liberia is rich in human and natural resources; but ii) is deprived of development largely because its human capital lacks the knowledge to transform the natural resources into wealth—whether through farming, mining, fishing, or other productive ventures that require technology or financial investments. Consequently, Liberia is relatively rich in natural capital but relatively poor in relations to its peers in both human and produced capital. Moreover, because of a legacy of entrenched inequality in access to development opportunities, widespread infrastructure deficits and pervasive poverty have become the binding constraints to future growth and prosperity.